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Apple Cider Turkey

From: Monique 
Sent: Sunday, October 12, 2014 8:12 PM
Subject: Apple cider based turkey

Hello Uncle Phaedrus, 

   I have a challenge for you that I hope you accept. I am trying to locate a Thanksgiving turkey recipe 
that was originally printed in a newspaper back in the sixties. Unfortunately, I lost the recipe during 
Hurricane Marilyn in St. Thomas. The main thing I remember is that the turkey was coated with an egg yolk 
and mustard and was basted every 20 minutes with apple juice or cider. The stuffing was a creation of its 
own with besides bread crumbs. It included sausage, apples, Mandarin oranges Chinese five spices and other. 
Any info on this would be great because of the coating and basting it was one of the most juicy turkeys 
baked in an oven. The process was very time-consuming but the finished product made it well worth the effort.
   I hope to hear from you before the holidays and thank-you for you time and consideration on this matter,


Hello Monique,

Sorry, I had no success with this. Do you recall in which newspaper it was printed?


Hello Monique,

One of my readers sent this recipe. There are a lot of similarities between this recipe and your description. Let me know.


by Morton Thompson
edited by Jeffrey Steingarten
Not for the faint of heart, this one - especially with 20 hungry people waiting in the next room.  
The recipe dates back many years, so it may seem a bit archaic in spots - for example, the original references to Coleman's Mustard.
This version of the recipe is from Jeffrey Steingarten's book, "The Man Who Ate Everything", an informative and very funny book.

1 turkey, 16-22 pounds
1 apple
1 orange
20 oz crushed pineapple
1 lemon
10 oz water chestnuts
3 tbs. preserved ginger
5 tsp. Coleman's mustard
2 tsp. caraway seed
3 tsp. celery seed
2 tsp. poppy seed
7 tsp. fresh oregano
1/2 tsp. mace
4 tbs. fresh parsley
4 cloves
1/2 tsp. turmeric
1/2 tsp. marjoram
1-1/2 tsp. savory
1 tbs. fresh thyme
1 tbs. fresh sage
2 bay leaves
1 tsp. paprika
1/2 tsp. coriander
9 cloves garlic
black pepper
cayenne pepper
4 large onions
6 stalks celery
1-1/2 lb. fresh bread crumbs
1 cup sifted all-purpose flour
3/4 lb ground veal
1/4 lb ground fresh pork
1/4 lb unsalted butter
six eggs
olive oil
3 tbs. onion juice
3 tsp. lemon juice
3 cups apple cider

The turkey should not be less than 16 pounds and not more than 22.  If it is 18 pounds or more, buy a hen.  
You will get more breast.

Remove all loose fat from the inside of the bird and render it by chopping it finely, putting it in a small 
saucepan with 1/2 cup of water, bringing to a boil, and simmering until all the water has evaporated and 
you are left with clear fat and pieces of solids.   Reserve the fat for the stuffing, and brown the solids 
for a treat for your dog.

In a stew pan, put the chopped gizzard and the neck and heart, to which add 1 bay leaf, 1 teaspoon of paprika, 
1/2 teaspoon of coriander, 1 clove of garlic, 4 cups of water, and salt to taste.  Let this simmer while you 
go ahead with the dressing.  Oil the turkey's skin.  This will let the blackened coating lift off more easily 
later on.   Rub the bird inside and out with salt and pepper.


Dice a peeled and cored apple, dice a peeled orange and put them in a bowl.  Add to this bowl 20 oz of crushed 
pineapple, the grated rind of 1/2 lemon, 10 oz of drained and coarsely chopped water chestnuts, and 3 tablespoons 
of chopped preserved ginger. 

In a second bowl, put 2 teaspoons of Coleman's mustard, 2 teaspoons of caraway seed, 3 teaspoons of celery seed, 
2 teaspoons of poppy seed, 7 teaspoons of finely chopped fresh oregano, 1 well-crushed large bay leaf, 1 teaspoon 
black pepper, 1/2 teaspoon of mace, 4 tablespoons of well-chopped parsley, 4 or 5 finely minced cloves of garlic, 
4 cloves minus the heads and well-chopped, 1/2 teaspoon of turmeric, 4 large well-chopped onions, 6 well-chopped 
stalks of celery, 1 and 1/2 teaspoon marjoram, 1 and 1/2 teaspoon savory (summer savory if you can get it), 
1 tablespoon of fresh thyme, 1 tablespoon of fresh sage, and 1 teaspoon of salt.

In a third bowl, dump 1 and 1/2 pounds of fresh bread crumbs.  Add to this 3/4 lb of ground veal, 1/4 lb of ground 
fresh pork, 1/4 lb butter and all the rendered turkey fat.   Mix the contents of each bowl.  When each bowl is 
well mixed, with your hands mix the three of them together well.  Mix until your forearms and wrists ache.  
Then mix it some more.  Now toss it enough so that it isn't any longer a doughy mass.

Stuff your turkey, but not too fully.  Pretty full, though.  Stuff the neck and tie the end.  Skewer the bird and 
tie the strings.  Better still, sew up the openings and sew the wings to the body. 

1 hour before cooking is to begin, turn on your oven full force and let it get red-hot.   You want to have it ready 
so the stuffing does not sit in the turkey while you wait for the oven.  Open a roasting rack nearly all the way 
and cover with heavily greased aluminum foil.  Put the bird in it - breast down.  Brown the bird for about 15 minutes. 
Turn it on its back and brown for another 15 minutes. 

While its browning, in a cup make a paste consisting of the yolks of 6 eggs, 3 teaspoons of Coleman's mustard, 
3 cloves of minced garlic, 3 tablespoons of onion juice, 1 and 1/2 teaspoon of salt, 6 pinches of cayenne pepper, 
3 teaspoons of lemon juice, and enough sifted flour to make a stiff paste. Take a pastry brush or an ordinary big 
paintbrush (not used!) and stand by.

After browning has finished, remove the bird.  Turn the oven down to 325 degrees. While the turkey is sizzling hot, 
leaving it on its back, paint it completely all over with the paste.  Put it back in the oven.  The paste will set 
in a few minutes.   Drag the bird out again.  Paint every nook and cranny of it once more. Put it back in the oven.  
Keep doing this until you run out of paste.

To the giblet-neck-liver-heart gravy that has been simmering, add 3 cups of cider and 1 cup of water. Stir it well 
and don't cook it any more; Just keep it warm on top of the oven. This is your basting fluid. Baste every 15 minutes.  
(You will baste the bird from 12-15 times.)

The bird should cook 4-1/2 hours for an 18-pounder, to 5-1/2 hours for a 22-pounder.   Begin timing when you turn 
the oven down to 325.  An instant meat thermometer should read about 180 to 185 degrees in the thigh between the 
leg and body, 170 degrees in the breast, and 160 degrees in the stuffing. 

When you remove it, the turkey will be dead black.  You will think, "Damn! I've ruined it!"  Be calm.  Using tweezers, 
screwdrivers and whatever other utensils seem appropriate, pry loose the paste coating. Hopefully it will come off readily.   
Beneath this burnt, harmless, now worthless shell, the bird will be golden and dark brown, succulent, giddy-making with 
wild aromas, crisp and crunchable and crackling. 

Dear Uncle Phaedrus,
    Thank you so much for your resources and help from your readers This  appears to be the recipe.  
It is a great challenge (but not to daunting with help) The results are amazing. The meat comes out very moist and 
the stiffing is like nothing one has had before. I appreciate the effort and getting this before the holidays.

Belgica Caramel Tart

From: dom 
Sent: Sunday, October 12, 2014 7:11 PM
Subject: Belgica Tart

I am searching for the recipe for Belgica Tart and I see the topic comes up on your Blog.

As far as I know Belgica Tart is something commonly found in bakeries in South Africa although 
I’m not quite sure of it’s origins.  Maybe the recipe was brought over by the French Hugenots 
when they settled in the Cape Colonies. It’s something that I have always known.

Although it would be easy to make in part, it is the ingredients of the topping that I am curious 
about which I think is toasted coconut and copped nuts.

Basics are as follows:
Sweet pastry case, inside painted with melted chocolate.  Then filled with crème pattissier.  
Then topped with whipped cream piled high and almost shaped like a cupcake.  The cream is then 
topped with toasted coconut and chopped walnuts /pecan nuts.

That’s as much as I know.

Hello Dom,

I had a request for these in 2010. See: 6-4-2010 I had no success then, and I had no success today in finding a recipe. However, I did find a bit more information about them. They are called “Belgica Tarts” or “Belgica Caramel Tarts”. They appear to be unique to South Africa, and they may be unique to Chateau Gateaux Patisseries as well, since these are the only bakeries that I found offering them. There’s a photo of them here: flickr

The Chateau Gateaux Patisserie web page at Chateau Gateaux describes them thus:

“Golden sweet pastry lined with chocolate and filled with crème patisserie, fresh whipped cream and soft caramel, coated with chopped coconut macaroons”

I am doubtful that these are a common pastry. They appear to be a creation of Chateau Gateaux, and therefore it is unlikely that the recipe is available. It does not appear that anyone has created a copycat recipe for them. There is a recipe here for “Chocolate Caramel Coconut Tarts”. This recipe does not claim to be a “Belgica Tart”, but it might taste similar: Chocolate Caramel Coconut Tarts


From: Dom 
Sent: Monday, October 13, 2014 8:41 PM
To: Phaedrus 
Subject: Re: Belgica Tart
Hi Phaed

They might not be commonly known globally but they are VERY well known in South Africa.  
The Spar chain of supermarkets make them in their bakeries as do a lot of coffee shops.  
My grandparents were best friends with a couple from Belgium who had a famous Hotel called 
the Belgica and an iff spin if that was their bakery. I wonder if they invented it?
Curious research

Hi Dom,

I meant to say that the tarts were not common outside South Africa.

There is (or was) a historic hotel in Durban, SA called the “Belgica Hotel.” The restaurant in the hotel was the Rubenshof, and it was noted for its pastries. The Vanslembrouck family were the owners, and they now own and operate “Arriba Chocolates”, a purveyor of cakes and confections, also in South Africa. You may be correct in your speculation that the Belgica tart began with them, but I found nothing on the internet to connect the Belgica tart with the hotel or the restaurant or the family. You might try writing to Arriba Chocolates and asking them. Their contact information is on their site at: Arriba Chocolates

If Arriba is no help and you want to pursue the origin of this tart further, I’d suggest that you try to interest a newspaper columnist in South Africa or try to locate a South African cultural historian and write to them.


You are an amazing researcher!!!    The ‘Van’s’ as we used to know them were best friends with my Grandparents. 
My mother and her 2 sisters all had their wedding receptions at the Belgica Hotel, which in it’s day was the best in it’s class.

Thanks for the extra information - very interesting!


Korb's Bakery Chocolate Chip Cookies

From: Alyssa  
Sent: Saturday, October 11, 2014 12:52 PM
Subject: Korbs in pawt chocolate chip cookies.

I would love the recipe for there choc.chip favorite for years.thank you ... 


Hello Alyssa,

Korb’s was sold to Ed Field, who closed them down in the late 90s. He, presumably, has the recipes.

No one has had any success locating the chocolate chip cookies recipe from Korb’s, and it doesn’t appear that anyone has succeeded in creating a copycat.

There is a nostalgia message board for Korb’s here: retrori blogspot

As you can see, someone posted anonymously on that board that they “had all of Korb’s recipes”, which elicited a lot of requests. The anonymous poster does not seem to have responded to any of them. The poster was likely not being truthful.


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